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Craig Parr to protect commodity prices at Flower Foods

A desire to mitigate the impact of increasingly volatile commodity prices has led to the appointment of Craig Parr as Flower Foods first chief risk officer.

As the nation’s second largest producer and marketer of packaged bakery foods for retail and foodservice customers, Flower Foods said the move will result initially in increased focus on commodity hedging and purchasing strategies.

"Volatility in the commodities markets in recent years has caused us to focus even more carefully on our hedging and forward buying strategies for ingredients and other goods, and we are continually looking for ways to further improve our practices," said Flower Foods CFO Steve Kinsey. "Bringing on someone with Craig's depth of experience and proven track record with a highly respected commodities-based firm will help us even better manage our purchasing and hedging strategies and risk areas. Craig has shown that he can drive profitability, strengthen financial operations, reduce risk, and develop sound strategies, and we are very pleased that he's joining our team."

Parr previously served as VP of risk management and food ingredient supply at The Andersons, Inc., where he spent the past 20 years.

Flower Foods had 2011 sales of $2.8 billion and operates 44 bakeries that produce a wide range of bakery products. The company operates a direct-store-delivery network with access to approximately 70% of the U.S. population in the East, South, and Southwest as well as in certain markets in California. The company also markets brands such as Nature’s Own, Tastykake, and Mrs. Freshley's.